Here’s what’s happening this week in the book industry:
In a May 6 column titled “Save Barnes & Noble!” New York Times opinion columnist David Leonhardt writes that Washington, D.C.’s leniency toward Amazon on antitrust issues jeopardizes the chain’s continued existence, as well as that of competing indie bookstores, and negatively affects the American economy. The article quotes ABA CEO Oren Teicher, who says, “It’s in the interest of the book business…for Barnes & Noble not just to survive but to thrive.” Here are some responses to Leonhardt’s column from readers who are reexamining their personal shopping habits in light of Amazon’s increasing market dominance.
Today, May 9, Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey will lead Senate Democrats and one Republican co-sponsor, Maine Senator Susan Collins, in filing a Congressional Review Act (CRA) petition in an effort to repeal the Restoring Internet Freedom Order. The aim of the CRA is to reinstate net neutrality rules, which the FCC voted to repeal in December. With 50 senators supporting the resolution, it is expected that the CRA will successfully force a vote in the Senate, which would occur before the June 12 deadline.
Former First Lady Michelle Obama will open the American Library Association’s (ALA) Annual Conference, to take place June 21–26 in New Orleans, according to ALA’s American Libraries Magazine. It will be Obama’s first promotional appearance in anticipation of her memoir, Becoming, to be published by Crown in the U.S. and Canada on November 13.
Random House Children’s is launching a new graphic novel imprint, Random House Graphic, in fall 2019, with Gina Gagliano, former associate director of First Second Books, to lead the line as publishing director.
Tracey Guest has been promoted to vice president, executive director of publicity for St. Martin’s Press and its associated imprints. Guest joined St. Martin’s as vice president, director of publicity in 2014.
Daniel Houghton, CEO of travel publisher Lonely Planet, has left the company. NC2, Lonely Planet’s parent company of five years, is looking to sell the business, which launched in 1972.
The New York City Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin, New York magazine, and Vulture have announced Jennifer Egan’s Manhattan Beach (Scribner) as the winner of the city’s “One Book, One New York” contest; New York City readers voted for Manhattan Beach over four other New York-themed novels.
The Swedish panel that awards the Nobel Prize in Literature said on Friday, May 4, that it will not name a laureate this year due to infighting, resignations, and public outrage over a sexual abuse scandal. The panel will name both the 2018 Literature winner and the 2019 winner next year.
The Shipping News and Brokeback Mountain author Annie Proulx has been named the winner of the 2018 Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction, which recognizes a writer whose work has “told us something new about the American experience.” She will formally receive the prize at a ceremony at the Library of Congress National Book Festival on September 1.
The shortlist for the 2018 Arthur C. Clarke Award, given to the best science fiction novel of the year, was announced last week. The list includes American War by Omar El Akkad (Knopf), which appeared on the April 2017 Indie Next List. The winner will be announced in July.
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